Clarence R. 'Blacky' Blackwell Jr., retired police officer, dies at 78

Clarence R. "Blacky" Blackwell Jr., a retired city police officer and state motor vehicles investigator, died Tuesday of heart failure at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.

The Sparrows Point resident was 78.

Mr. Blackwell, the son of a bus driver and a homemaker, was born and raised in White Plains, N.Y., where he also graduated from high school.

In the late 1940s, he served with the merchant marine on the Great Lakes, and after finishing a tour of duty with the Army, moved to Baltimore in the 1950s.

Mr. Blackwell joined the Baltimore Police Department in 1956 and spent the majority of his career, until retiring in 1982, in the traffic and motorcycle division.

He then went to work in 1982 as an inspector for the Motor Vehicle Administration, retiring a second time in 2002.

The longtime Sparrows Point resident enjoyed traveling in his motor home and visiting his many "snowbird friends in Florida" during the winter months, family members said.

He also had been a league bowler and was an avid fisherman and hunter.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at Duda-Ruck Funeral Home, 7922 Wise Ave., Dundalk.

Surviving are his wife of 53 years, the former Delma Martin; two sons, Kevin Blackwell of Waldorf and Keith Blackwell of Parkville; two daughters, Kim Heaney of Sparrows Point and Kristina Loveland of Parkville; a brother, Donald Blackwell of New Fairfield, Conn.; two sisters, Carol Connors of Gales Ferry, Conn., and Lorraine Ruby of Dundalk; and three grandchildren.

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